I went back to the dentist who pulled my wisdom tooth for a check-up. I had asked for the earliest appointment of the day. When I arrived at the waiting room, two other people were there ahead of me.
One was a young man of about 20. He was chatting with the 50ish woman in the other chair. “I had a dream last night that I was an elephant and poachers were taking my tusks.”
The other woman assured him. “You’ve come to the right place. She’s so gentle.”
I wouldn’t describe getting a tooth pulled as gentle. This dentist knows how to numb people. And she knows how to be quick and efficient. She made it as untraumatic as possible. But gentle?
There was no point in arguing. The goal here was to calm the young man down.
Even though both these other people arrived first, apparently I did have the earliest appointment. My healing gums passed inspection. I hope I never have to go back there.
I got home, ate, brushed my teeth, and brushed a filling out. So, I had to call my regular dentist. He had room for me in a few hours.
When I walked into the office, the receptionist said, “Weren’t you just here last week?” Yes, I was.
My dentist is an honorable man. When he saw that it was a filling he’d put in only 2 years ago, he said there would be no charge.
While we waited for the novocaine to start working, he told me about visiting his uncle, who was also a dentist. His uncle was one of the first dentists to use anesthetic on children.
And when I left, we both expressed the wish that I won’t have to go back for at least 6 months.